Mobile ad spend pegged at $98.3 bn in 2017; becomes 2nd largest ad medium

Mobile is now the second-largest ad medium by spend, having overtaken desktop internet for the first time this year. With an anticipated year-on-year growth rate of 35.2 per cent, mobile ad spend across all formats is expected to amount to $98.3 billion in 2017, representing 23 per cent of global spend. 

This was revealed in WARC’s latest monthly Global Ad Trends report, digesting up-to-date insights and evidenced thinking from the worldwide advertising industry. Focusing on mobile, this latest Global Ad Trends report includes key findings based on data from WARC’s 12 key markets – Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Russia, the UK and the US – which between them account for approximately two-thirds of the value of global ad trade. 

WARC estimates that 51 per cent of total mobile advertising expenditure for this year will be allocated to search. Display formats are expected to account for 45 per cent and classified and other spend 4 per cent. 

The largest mobile markets are the US, China and the UK. TV is expected to remain the world’s largest ad medium by spend this year and next, at around $139 billion. 

Almost all of Facebook’s ad revenue now comes from mobile 

Social networking accounts for over a third of daily online time via all devices (2 hours 15 minutes), and one in seven people (1.1 billion) access Facebook via a mobile device each day. 

Mobile’s share of Facebook’s ad revenue is expected to equate to 88 per cent ($34 billion) for 2017, up 5 percentage points from 2016. 

With mobile display ad spend expected to reach $45.2 billion within WARC’s 12 key markets this year, there is a strong correlation between Facebook’s global mobile ad growth and the growth of mobile display in the markets. However, whilst mobile growth will far outpace all other media, as Facebook’s mobile ad revenue growth eases (a forecast rise of 40 per cent in 2017 versus 70 per cent in 2016), global mobile display growth will also cool. 

The duopoly of Facebook & Google accounts for a quarter of global ad spend 

A comparison of company revenues with data in WARC’s Adspend Database, which contains ad spend data for 96 markets, shows that the duopoly of Facebook and Google will account for 61 per cent of all online advertising expenditure this year, up from 58 per cent in 2016 and 47 per cent in 2012. 

Further, the anticipated $133 billion in combined revenue will equate to a quarter of all ad spend worldwide in 2017, up from a fifth in 2016 and just 9.4 per cent in 2012. 

James McDonald, Data Editor, WARC, remarked, “Daily mobile time has more than doubled over the last five years – from 1 hour 17 minutes in 2012 to 3 hours 2 minutes in 2017– and our research demonstrates how marketers are looking to capitalise on this by investing more in social, video and native mobile formats over the coming years. Much of this influx has been to the benefit of the duopoly – Facebook and Google – where one in four dollars of global advertising is now spent.” 

Global Media Analysis: A round-up of the importance of mobile 

  • Mobile advertising accounts for:
  • 23% of global advertising spend this year
  • 55% of North American marketers aim to focus on mobile branded content by 2022
  • 88% of Facebook’s ad revenue attributed to mobile in 2017
  • 92% of Facebook’s daily users use mobile
  • 135% increase in daily mobile time since 2012

Other new key media intelligence on WARC Data 

  • Programmatic accounts for over a third of the value of US ad trade
  • Advertising expenditure has grown faster than the global economysince 1980
  • 100% pixels is twice as effective as current online video industry standard

Global Ad Trends is part of WARC Data, a newly enhanced dedicated online service featuring current advertising benchmarks, data points, ad trends and user-generated expanded databases. 

Aimed at media and brand owners, market analysts, media, advertising and research agencies as well as academics, WARC Data provides current advertising and media information,hard factsand figures – essential market intelligencefor adindustry related business, strategy and planning required in any decision making process.


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